9 K-Dramas We Can’t Believe Are Turning 10 Years Old In 2019

It’s that time again where we turn back the clock by 10 years, and revisit some of the more memorable hits of 2009. It was a year that delivered many ratings-strong dramas like “The Great Queen Seon Deok” and “Shining Inheritance,” as well as the cultural phenomenon “Boys Over Flowers.” These dramas may not still be as amazing in this current landscape, especially after our drama-watching palates have been refined over the years. But they have definitely left a long lasting impression on us, and sometimes, that’s all we can ask for!

So let’s head down memory lane and say “Happy Birthday” to these 10-year-old dramas!

Boys Over Flowers

Aired on: KBS
Air date: January 5 – March 31, 2009 (25 eps.)
Starring: Ku Hye Sun, Lee Min Ho, Kim Hyun Joong, Kim Bum, Kim Joon, Kim So Eun

Is there really anything that needs to be said about this entry? This cultural phenomenon propelled Lee Min Ho into all young girls’ hearts, and ignited very serious (and scientific) debates over which version of the “F4” was more superior. Why, even saying the title of the drama will probably give you war flashbacks to Lee Min Ho’s perm. Also, “Almost paaaaradise~” (You totally sang that didn’t you?)

Watch “Boys Over Flowers”:

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Cain and Abel

Aired on: SBS
Air date: 18 February – 23 April, 2009 (20 eps.)
Starring: So Ji Sub, Shin Hyun Joon, Han Ji Min, Chae Jung An, Song Jong Ho

“Cain and Abel” took awhile for the story to kick into gear and may have been overly dramatic in general, but with So Ji Sub leading the show, did all of that really matter? Those who stuck with this not-your-average-medical-drama were rewarded with strong acting, an engaging watch, and most importantly, hours and hours of ogling at So Ji Sub.

Watch “Cain And Abel”:

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City Hall

Aired on: SBS
Air date: April 29 – July 2, 2009 (20 eps.)
Starring: Kim Sun Ah, Cha Seung Won, Lee Hyung Chul, Choo Sang Mi

That proposal! THAT PROPOSAL! In the heart-fluttering scene where the lights lit up one by one leading to the most beautifully decorated area, followed by a slow dance, then the words Jo Gook said to Mi Rae while proposing — everything was perfect, and this scene still makes us squeal even to this day! Also, the kisses! THE KISSES!

Watch “City Hall”:

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High Kick Through The Roof

Aired on: MBC
Air date: September 7, 2009 – March 19, 2010 (126 eps.)
Starring: Lee Soon Jae, Kim Ja Ok, Jeong Bo Seok, Oh Hyun Kyung, Daniel Choi, Hwang Jung Eum, Shin Se Kyung, Yoon Shi Yoon, Jin Ji Hee, Seo Shin Ae, Lee Gikwang

For those of you who watched this as it aired, I hope this doesn’t give you any traumatic flashbacks. Billed as a family sitcom, “High Kick Through The Roof” charmed viewers young and old, and gave the relatively green actors household-name statuses. Unfortunately, and to the bewilderment of all viewers, the last episode dovetailed into melodrama territory and left a bitter taste in viewers’ mouths. If only we could have stopped watching at episode 125, then all would still be right in the world.

This is literally our reactions to that final episode. True story.

Watch “High Kick Through the Roof”:

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IRIS

Aired on: KBS
Air date: October 14 – December 17, 2009 (20 eps.)
Starring: Lee Byung Hun, Kim Tae Hee, Jung Joon Ho, Kim So Yeon, Choi Seung Hyun

You know how when some people listen to a certain song, a specific memory is drawn up? That’s exactly the power of one of IRIS’ OST “Don’t Forget,” where Baek Ji Young’s beautiful and even melancholic sounding vocals are layered perfectly into the scenes. And anytime I hear the song now, it brings to memory a zippy, stylish, and entertaining drama with the very charismatic lead of Lee Byun Hun.

Watch “IRIS”:

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The Great Queen Seon Deok

Aired on: MBC
Air date: 25 May – 22 December, 2009 (62 eps.)
Starring: Lee Yo Won, Go Hyun Jung, Kim Nam Gil, Uhm Tae Woong, Yoo Seung Ho

Does anyone else remember the agony they went through when the deliciously antagonistic Mishil died (and left a Mishil-shaped hole in our hearts)? Or when Bidam took over the second half of the drama, and the “Army of Bidam lovers” literally sang Kim Nam Gil’s praises everywhere they went? Or when arguments were made about team Yushin vs. team Bidam? Those were a long seven months of TV-chasing, but they were a memorable seven months.

Watch “The Great Queen Seon Deok”:

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Shining Inheritance

Aired on: SBS
Air date: April 25 – July 26, 2009 (28 eps.)
Starring: Han Hyo Joo, Lee Seung Gi, Bae Soo Bin, Moon Chae Won

This was another drama that had strong ratings during its time, and most importantly, introduced the world to “BSB.” No, not Backstreet Boys, but Bae Soo Bin. To be fair, he has had other significant roles prior to this drama, and in this one, he was also contending with just-as-cute male lead Lee Seung Gi, but his super charming Park Jun Sae stole the hearts of women everywhere!

Watch “Shining Inheritance”:

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The Return of Iljimae

Aired on: MBC
Air date: January 21 – April 9, 2009 (24 eps.)
Starring: Jung Il Woo, Yoon Jin Seo, Kim Min Jong, Jung Hye Young

“The Return of lljimae” was one of the more underrated dramas of 2009, falling into the shadow of ratings hit “Boys Over Flowers,” as well as a similarly titled drama on SBS that had just aired a year before. This version is decidedly more nuanced and complex when compared to the other version, and further rewatch will likely bring new information to light, like the significance of that very first opening scene.

Watch “The Return of Iljimae”:

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You’re Beautiful

Aired on: SBS
Air date: 7 October – 26 November, 2009 (16 eps.)
Starring: Park Shin Hye, Jang Geun Suk, Jung Yong Hwa, Lee Hong Ki, Uee

According to the ratings, “You’re Beautiful” didn’t quite capture Korean viewers’ hearts during its run. But it did gain a cult following with very passionate and loyal fans (What can I say, we just love this show). Logically, our brains tell us it’s a stretch that Park Shin Hye could pass for a guy, or that all three members of A.N.JELL would be interested in “him.” But our hearts could care less, and instead, chose to be overly invested in their relationships (and if you’re like me, bawl your eyes out every time Shin Woo is friendzoned).

Watch “You’re Beautiful”:

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Which of these dramas do you think best stood the test of time? And which of your 2009 favorites was left off the list? Leave your comments below!

Belinda_C can’t believe how much time has passed! And how many days is left until SEVENTEEN’s 6th mini album drops! Come countdown with her on Twitter!

Currently watching:The Crowned Clown
All-time favorite:Kill Me Heal Me
Looking forward to: Touch Your Heart” starring Lee Dong Wook and Yoo In Na.

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